What Is an SEO Technical Audit Service and What Do They Offer?

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Ranking your website, whether old or new, on top of Google search is possible as long as you observe the best search engine optimization (SEO) practices.

But it's also possible to not rank or has difficulty ranking websites on search engine results pages (SERPs) despite practicing on- and off-page SEO.

The problem may not be with the tactics you're implementing. Instead, it's probably in how your website is currently set up.

To make matters worse, unless you have extensive experience with website management, you won't be able to identify what the problems may be.

This is where technical SEO audits come into play.

What is a Technical SEO Audit?

A technical SEO audit provides you with all the information regarding your site's ranking factors. From here, you can determine which factors are preventing your website from ranking correctly on search engines.

Suppose you don't have the necessary experience to interpret the audit results fully. In this case, you need technical SEO service providers who will conduct the audit and make sense of the report.

From here, they will give you a checklist of things to do and fix your website issues. Then, depending on your arrangement with the providers, they can troubleshoot your website for you.

How Does an SEO Technical Audit Work?

Technical SEOs produce an SEO site audit report with tools that can deeply crawl your website and unearth information that regular SEO tools can't.

Examples of SEO auditing tools are as follows:

There are probably more tools they will use to conduct a full SEO audit, but the ones above are good enough to cover 80% of your site's audit needs.

What's Included in a Technical SEO Audit Service?

A comprehensive SEO audit report measures your site over many ranking factors.

From here, it's just a matter of whether technical SEO service providers can pick up the SEO issues affecting your site based on these factors.

To help you understand what to expect from website SEO audit services, here are the sections they audit on your website:

General On-Page Analysis

The data gathered in this analysis concern on-page SEO factors. Your SEO specialist can rectify these issues without help from a technical SEO.

Below are the factors analyzed in this section:

  • Duplicate content - two or more URLs that have the same content. This problem is common among e-commerce websites with their complex hierarchical structure of categories and subcategories. Expect to experience this issue as well if you use URL parameters to track the performance of your SEO campaign. Either way, use canonical tags on the page version that you want Google to crawl and index. This helps avoid confusion as to which page variant to rank for.
  • hreflang (international) - create versions of your website that display different languages to cater to your global audience.
  • Image alt - enable search engine spiders to "read" images. Must describe what the image is all about. Best if the target keyword is mentioned in the alt text.
  • Keyword stuffing - target keyword must only be mentioned when necessary in the page's context, not for over-optimizing it. Instead of using the same keyword, employ phrase diversity by mentioning related or natural language processing (NLP) keywords.
  • Meta description - similar to meta titles, but length should be equal to or less than 160 characters. Descriptions for each URL should be optimized for click-through rate on SERPs.
  • Meta titles - must be equal to or less than 60 characters and mention the target keyword. Also, titles of each URL should be unique.
  • Schema markup - use the appropriate structured data for each page to show the correct rich snippet once it starts ranking on search results.
  • Thin content - this content type doesn't' deliver any value to users. Mostly seen on low word count pages. But it doesn't automatically mean low word count equals thin content as it's a case-to-case basis.
  • URL structure - must use the HTTPS protocol, redirect to WWW or non-WWW version, consider removing irrelevant slugs to make URLs shorter, and include target keywords in article permalinks.

Technical On-Site Analysis

The factors under technical on-site analysis are best worked on by people who know the best practices and are comfortable making site-wide technical SEO changes.

Here is a shortlist of things that an SEO audit looks like from a technical standpoint:

  • Site structure and architecture - implement topic clustering to help increase your site's topical relevance to its niche. To do this, you must develop an internal linking structure to maximize the flow of link juice across your site pages. Here, you also get to see broken internal links on your site that may cause problems with your site's link juice flow.
  • Navigation - organize information on your site using categories and subcategories, and determine which pages and sections should appear on your site navigation and where, i.e., top navigation, sidebar, or footer.
  • Breadcrumbs - consider including breadcrumbs to help categorize information on your site for users and search spiders.
  • Click depth - find a way to make all pages closer to your homepage, thus achieving a "flat" site architecture. The ideal click depth should be equal to or less than three clicks away from your homepage.
  • Rel=prev/next - no need to use rel="prev" and rel="next" on pages since Google has deprecated them.
  • WWW vs. non-WWW - "www." acts as a hostname, which gives DNS flexibility for owners with multiple subdomains. Other than that, they have no SEO impact in the long run. Instead, look for internal links and backlinks that point to the incorrect site version, as you want to remain consistent with the canonicalized version.
  • Cookies - not a huge factor in SEO, but it's essential to have a pop-up that lets visitors know that your site is gathering their information for marketing purposes.
  • Robots.txt - prevent the indexation of non-essential URLs (PDFs, images, terms and conditions, etc.) from getting the most out of your crawl budget.
  • URL rewriting - make your URLs readable to humans, ex., instead of example.com/?p=123, it should appear as example.com/test. Most content management systems (CMSs) have this feature ready for customization, but others don't. If not, customize your .htaccess file to implement the rewrites.
  • Sitemaps - determine whether to allow search spiders to index and crawl your site categories, tags, media files, and others. It would help if you balanced getting the right pages indexed on Google search without depleting your crawl budget.
  • .htaccess - Aside from URL rewriting, this file lets you perform various activities to boost your site's SEO, such as resolving missing URLs, creating more efficient 301 redirects, and caching your website correctly. However, editing the .htaccess file is not recommended for advanced users as a line of code can break your site.

Log File Analysis

The log file analyzer feature allows users to extract your site's log file from its server and check the activity between your site and visitors or bot.

Below are the factors that a log file analysis is concerned with:

  • Bot activity - understand the behavior of search engine bots and see how deep they crawl pages into your site. You can also see spoofed bots activity that pretends to be search engines, but their IPs don't match with the search engine they're claiming to be. This enables you to determine the spoofed bots to ban from crawling your site, thus increasing your crawl budget.
  • Status Codes - identify pages with 4xx and 5xx status code errors, find out why then fix them. From here, change the URLs of the internal links pointing to these pages into their latest version.
  • Most vs. least crawled pages - identifying these pages allows you to understand why and why Google is (or is not) crawling them. You can replicate their structure for the most crawled pages on the pages you want Google to crawl more often.

Page Speed Optimization

Site speed is vital now more than ever, with the Page Experience update being the sign that Google wants to show fast-loading websites on top of search results.

Below are factors that a technical SEO audit will look at on your site:

  • Server speed - it is dependent on your web hosting provider. If your site is hosted on fast web host providers like Hostinger and SiteGround, consider migrating them to those sites.
  • Core Web Vitals (CWV) score - Go to PageSpeed Insights to check your site's CWV score. It also shows you suggestions on how to fix issues, so you know what to do.
  • Image compression - Decrease the file size of your images without compromising their quality. Tools like ShortPixel help you to compress the photos automatically on your site.
  • Browser caching - allows your site to store files on visitors' browsers, so it loads much faster when they visit again. Caching tools like WP Rocket also help load your site more efficiently via Gzip compression, JS/CSS modification, CDN integration, and more.

Backlink Analysis

Backlinks are arguably the most pivotal ranking factor in SEO. The more high-quality links you can get to point to your site, the greater the chances your site will rank on top of Google.

So, it only makes sense to understand the type of backlinks your site currently has and what you can do to improve your link profile for higher rankings.


Technical SEOs can audit backlinks for your using the following factors:

  • Link diversity - links are coming from various website types such as blog posts, directories, forum boards, news articles, and more. The more diverse the backlink types in your profile are, the more natural it looks in the eyes of Google.
  • Anchor text - refers to the clickable text that links to your site pages. It would help if you didn't use the exact anchor text for backlinks to the same page, as Google will deem them unnatural and might cause ranking problems to your website later.
  • TLD distribution - also known as top-level domains (TLDs), they talk about the domain extensions of the sites linking to you, with .com being the most popular. Since you want to make your links look natural as possible, you want to link from a diverse set of TLDs and not just target a single one. However, sites with .gov and .edu domain extensions are the most sought-after because of the power of their link juices.
  • Toxic links - identify links that do more harm than good to your site's organic rankings. These links come from spammy sites typified by low-quality content. Normally, you don't want to do anything to do because Google is smart enough to ignore these links from your link profile. But if you receive a warning on your GSC, consider disavowing them.
  • Dofollow vs. nofollow - the former refers to links that pass link juice to your site, while the latter doesn't. While it's best to focus on getting as many dofollow backlinks as possible, you must build a more natural-looking link profile by building nofollow links.
  • Pages with the most backlinks - find out which pages these are to help you understand why people are linking to them so you can replicate their success on your other pages. Also, monitor your backlinks from these pages to prevent losing them and your search rankings.
  • New/lost backlinks - speaking of lost backlinks, identify the ones coming from authoritative websites and recover them. At the same time, you want to check new links to your site and see the best ones you should monitor moving forward.

GBP Optimization

If you're running a local business, you must set up a Google Business Profile (GBP), formerly Google My Business (GMB), for it.

And as part of the SEO audit process, technical SEOs will also review your GBP page for issues that could be preventing it from ranking on Google's local 3-pack.

Below are factors they look into when auditing your page:

  • Profile accuracy - check if your hours, company description, and accepted forms of payment are correct. Regarding the description, you should mention your keywords to boost your rankings, provided that you observe Google Guidelines.
  • Categories - enter all the relevant categories to which your business belongs. This way, more users can access the page, and Google can reward the page will higher local search rankings.
  • Multiple listings - if your business has multiple locations, you must create GBP accounts for each with their accurate information.
  • NAP consistency - your name, address, and phone number must be the same on online local business directories. Inconsistencies in these details may confuse Google and give users the wrong information on search results.

SEO Results

Over time, you want to see how your site's SEO performance fared. Technical SEOs can review the report available on Google Search Console (and Google Analytics to an extent) and provide actionable items to help improve your strategy and campaigns.


Below are the metrics they will look at as part of their services:

  • Total clicks - Number of clicks your site pages ranking on search engines received over time.
  • Total impressions - Number of people who saw your site page ranking on Google search for their search queries.
  • Average CTR - The average number of clicks your site pages received on organic search.
  • Average position - The cumulative ranking position of your site pages for all the keywords that appear on Google search.

The Best SEO Audit Services to Choose From

It should be clear that not everybody can pull out the SEO audit process themselves.

You could purchase any of the tools above and audit your site to show you potential issues keeping it from ranking correctly.

However, you should be able to take action on these issues that the tool picked up on, which only SEO auditing services can do for you.

Their technical SEO knowledge and experience should prove invaluable to your site in the long run, especially once its keyword rankings start going up after the implementation of the SEO audit report.

Chris M. Walker

Legiit's very own has a highly-rated technical SEO audit service with a 5.0-star rating from 69 customers.

As the owner of Superstar SEO, Chris's skills in helping local businesses and bloggers rise in the ranks of search results have been sharpened through the years. 

And this audit report offered in Legiit is just an appetizer of what he can do to your business.

Prices start at $10 for an SEO technical audit report produced using Sitebulb, an SEO auditing tool for consultants. People who own many websites can choose between Chris's $50 (individual audit reports for five websites) and $100 (reports for ten sites).

Pitty123

Unlike Chris, username Pitty123 uses the CORA SEO Software to audit client sites. It checks for over 200 ranking factors and provides you with a comprehensive checklist of things to do to improve your site or page's rankings.

The problem with CORA is its steep price. So, instead of subscribing for $250/month ($125/month for the Lite version), simply get Pitty123 to run a CORA audit for just $11.

The offer also includes off-page SEO data from Ahrefs, Moz, and Majestic to complement CORA's on-page findings. From here, you have a clear idea of how to get your website unstuck and finally rank on top.

Volarex


Volarex runs your site's SEO audit using SEMrush, another premium SEO tool. It audits both on- and off-page ranking factors and delivers the report to you in PDF format in 24 hours.

Prices start at $8 (40% off its original sie) for a single domain URL. For people owning multiple sites, Volarex offers SEO audit reports for two sites at $20 and five sites at $50.

Conclusion

If you want to dominate organic search rankings with your site, you have to do the little things that most site owners neglect.

By compounding on these little things that search engines consider ranking factors, you can slowly but surely climb your way up the search ladder until you reach the top.

This is what an SEO technical audit service can do for you. Hopefully, this post sheds light on why they're essential to your SEO strategy with the variety of factors they audit.

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